I specifically joined TAI
forum to thank one person, Dr. Mudhan, for his extensive advice on detailing and looking after a Honda City. The Albus is a great story. So, thank you Dr. Mudhan.
Reading his threads, it is a very reminiscing reminder of my younger days (here's my short story) and my love affair with a certain German-made car that was custom built for me, something that I used every single day for over 15 years and in rather hostile climatic environment. The 'custom-built' part came about because a certain other German car manufacturer's sales person told me (when I was in the showroom to buy a car), quite bluntly right in my face, that 'these cars are for rich people, you should find something that is more practical" and pointed me in the direction of a certain Japanese carmaker's showroom. That despite the fact that I saved up for months and physically had the money in my pocket to buy the car I cavorted, outright and on the spot. At the end of 15 years, it was the technical director of the dealership that sold my car to me who bought the car, still with its factory paint and at a very reasonable price too - even though it had gone twice around the odo, it was maintained in mint condition through those fifteen-odd years. So, some may feel that Dr. Mudan's stories may go a bit overboard at times, but I jell here quite well. If he says, cleaning the car is therapeutic, I couldn't agree more.
I am 64 now, retired, and live in Chennai. A month ago (Nov'14), purchased a used 2011 Honda City S-MT with 16,553 kms under the belt (still with new-car smell) to replace my aging 1995 Maruti Esteem (white, by the way). This alabaster silver City was a weekend car for an IT pro who had to move out of the country - yes, it was a good deal.
Even before stumbled upon the doctor's White Albus, the following after-market surgeries has been planned and done to my Silver City.
By previous owner:
- 3M under body treatment (at dealership when new).
- 3M Nano-Crystalline RE-70 window film (at dealership).
- AutoFORM leatherette seat covers and floor mats.
- Reverse parking sensors.
After transfer, under my ownership:
- 3M Paint Sealant treatment.
- 3M Interior GermGreen treatment.
- 3M 1080 skins for ORVMs (were scratched) and door beadings (added recently).
- HRS H127 Alloy Wheels 15" x 6.5J (x4) Bright Silver.
- Pirelli P1 Cinturato tyres (x4) 195/60R16 V89 (Michelin Primacy ST3 contemplated, but dropped)
- Theft deterring Allen-key wheel nuts (supplied by wheel supplier)
Note: The drive has improved a lot, much lesser road noise, slightly better cushioned ride than the OEM
- Black Honda logo center caps for alloys (thanks to Dr. Mudhan)
- Parking lights changed to LED SMDs. (white front - warm-white rear)
- Replaced OEM
Horns (wouldn't move a sleeping dog) with Hella Black Pearl (+ new wiring harness).
- Headlight lamps changed to Osram Night Breaker Plus H4 - 12V- 55/60w 3700 kelvin.
- Race-X tyre pressure gauge (from UK, delivery awaited).
- Toptul 15" lockable toolbox (Taiwan, purchased from Shopclues) + Stanley combination lock.
- Black & Decker 12V Dustbuster vacuum cleaner (full size home Hover unit also available).
- HSRP specs (but not HSRP) 500 x 120 mm licence plates.
- Thermal & Acoustic insulation for four doors (from Mumbai, Chinese made, installation next week).
- A bunch of 3M micro-fiber cleaning cloth for interior and exterior.
- Alloys treated with longterm "Liquid Diamond" (self).
- Tyres and all rubber parts treated with Armourall.
- Micro-fiber dusting brush (brand unknown, works well, but will look for Jopasu now).
- Rust on front shock-mount wells (bad design, needs a cover), wire-brushed, Rustoff treatment and painted.
To be done (and some, under investigation):
- Reverse/brake/indicator bulbs to be replaced with LED SMDs, awaiting delivery (CREE to expensive).
- Door thermal and sound proofing (material on hand).
- Rain-X treatment for rear, side quarter windows, all light lens surfaces and ORVMs.
- Looking for a quality rear-deck roller blind (manual).
- Looking for a GPS tracker that plugs into OBD port (for tracking as well as monitoring car performance )
Note: Drivebot (a product of 5 engineers in Thailand) does a good job of monitoring technical performance of the car. Now, they have gone into a huddle at my suggestion to incorporate a GPS tracking and fencing system into it. We'll see). One day, all cars will come with a 'black-box' of some kind, I hope. I don't drive, so the need for a good GPS tracker.
- Looking into possibilities of using of a flash-drive (pen-drive like Sandisk Cruzer Switch) for MP3/320bit music playback. At present, using a FiiO X3 (126+8 GB, FLAC and MP3) for music needs, something too expensive to leave lying in the car. Any suggestions here, on formatting and use of pen-drives (FAT32, exFAT, NTFS), cluster allocation size, etc., is welcome.
I will post photos, once all work is done and completed. I still have a some amount of reading to do about this fascinating Albus. Thanks again, doctor, I am obliged.